This morning Roxanne and I went to the Doctor’s office for the first post-surgery checkup. My surgeon, Dr. Bien, and his team entered the examination room and we proceeded to chat for several minutes about the surgery and I explained to him how weird it was to be wheeled into the operating room, put under anesthesia, only to wake up in what felt like just under one minute. By “chatting” I mean me talking, then reading his lips and occasionally him writing down words or phrases I didn’t get.
I thanked Dr. Bien for not shaving off a big swath of hair on my surgery-side of my head. He smiled and then said he was going to lean the chair back so he could examine my incision. I needed to take my glasses off which is no big thing, except I’m pretty much blind without my glasses on. Translation: I can’t read lips without my glasses on!
Dr. Bien titled my head to one side and adjusted that very bright light on my incision area. He also had a camera focused on the incision so I could watch it all on the TV monitor in front of me – only everything looked fuzzy . He proceeded to take off the rest of the stitching adhesive and wipe down the side of my ear. I asked for my glasses and awkwardly looked through them with one of the bows folded. I looked at the screen and then asked, “where’s the scar?” I turned to look at the Doctor and Roxanne and repeated, “where is the scar!?” Amazing! Roxanne said later as we were driving away from the office that Dr. Bien did a fantastic job with the suturing which was why there was minimal scaring; she should know – her father was, and sister and two brothers-in-law are all doctors.
We spent the next 30 minutes talking, writing and drawing about the surgery, the implant and what to expect. One thing I wanted to know was how secure the implant was under the skin. Could I accidentally jar the implant in a certain direction and pull out those electrodes? The answer was, “no.” Dr. Bien then drew me a great diagram showing how the receiver/stimulator was actually “anchored” in the bone, tucked under the skin next to a hole that was drilled through my skull so the wires could make their way to the cochlea.
Thank you Dr. Bien for a job well done!
Success – I can now take a shower. The next step is to get my device turned on next Tuesday, November 12th, with a follow-up fine tuning the next day.
Regarding yesterday’s post, my old friend, Randy posted a reply on Facebook where he stated, “Coincidentally this evening the PBS News Hour had a story on phantom sounds.” Here’s the link:
If you read the link I encourage you to also scroll down and play the recordings in the “What Does Tinnitus Sound Like”? box. You will be amazed, shocked, and dismayed that there are folks that hear this kind of stuff all the time. I am one of those folks, only when I don’t hear jazz music… It’s enough to drive a person mad, but that’s another story.
On another note, people have been emailing and asking me about the puppy and how she’s adjusting to life with the Fulcher Family – da da da dum (snap snap). Well, Luna(tic) is doing great and came into our lives at the right time. By “right time” I mean that the puppy has been whining and barking from time-to-time. I know this because Roxanne would put her hands over her ears or use sign language to mimic a barking dog. Ahhh, silence can be golden…
Stay tuned for my next posts about American Sign Language and Captioning Services…